The last pair of binoculars

BeeMaa

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You will not go wrong with Swaro, Leica or Zeiss. All have their strengths and weaknesses when it comes to optical clarity, but at this level you are splitting hairs. Get what looks best to you out of those three. However, I will agree with @Scott CWO, that you should seriously consider the rangefinder option.

Personally I prefer Leica. Had a pair of 10x42R Geovid (Gen 1) that now reside with my PH. Giving them away was more of a ploy to get the new Leica 10x42 HD-B 3000. Love these as well and they see use weekly with no issues.

The bump on the bottom of the Swaro EL Range 10x42 put them out of contention for me. I wear them cross-body and the bump would be knocking into my hip constantly, and they didn't fell right holding them to my eyes. That bump really bothered me. The Zeiss were very good, but I preferred the way the colors looked through the Leica. For that kind of money, you should get EXACTLY what you want. Don't settle.
 

Muskox

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Have you ever tried Maven?

I have yet to handle a pair, but I hear they are top shelf for Jap glass.
 

ufg8r93

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I'm sure I'll end up with a set of Swaro or Leica rangfinding binos at some point but they are so darned *heavy*. They weigh 50% more than my current binos or similarly sized 10x32 binos. The older I get the more I prefer compact binos around my neck.

I have a set of Meopta Meopro 10x32s that are really compact/light and have been terrific. Africa 2x, CO elk, Saskatchewan in late Nov, rainy England 2x, and 5+ of SE USA hunting where it can be 100F or 20F and 95% humidity. I take em with me on vacation also - never know when you'll need some binos!

I love these little binos and they are very inexpensive. They certainly aren't Swaros or Leicas but they are also 1/4 the cost.

I used my outfitter's Swaro EL rangefinding binos in 2019 one afternoon while we were sitting in a blind hunting warthog over a waterhole. They wouldn't range the wildebeest in the shadows 150 yards away but my inexpensive Vortex rangefinder would. Quite surprising and the reason why I didn't end up purchasing rangefinding binos when I did a lot of research in late 2019.
 

Muskox

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The most recent laser range finder test I saw showed that the Leupold 1600 TBI was the most accurate.

I have one of those, I had bought it before the test, and I really like it.

I am a huge fan of separating binos from LRF.
 

BC.Pat

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If you ever see a pair of the old zeiss armored 10x42’s, buy them! I believe that is the model Lion is referencing above.
These are my back up pair, and they are great ! Many of my new getting into hunting , partners borrow them. Flowed by the inevitable question will I sell them. ( nope)

Regards
Pat
 

WAB

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The most recent laser range finder test I saw showed that the Leupold 1600 TBI was the most accurate.

I have one of those, I had bought it before the test, and I really like it.

I am a huge fan of separating binos from LRF.

I just bought the Leupold 2800. Fantastic rangefinder!
 

ack

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Hello hunters,
I’m in the market for what is the last set of binoculars I hopefully ever need to buy. In 2019 I was attempting to do this very thing and was regretfully talked into buying a pair of Vortex Razor 10x42. Halfway through my season in Zambia they completely came apart on me and were utterly useless, luckily I had a backup pair on hand. I’ve just about settled on the Swarovski SLC 10x42 as I believe it’s the best balance between ruggedness and glass quality I’ve found but I’m wanting to hear your valued opinions. I’m not intentionally abusive on my equipment and try to take good care of everything I use but I’m also inherently quite hard on things. That being said build quality and strength is at the top of the list, then comes optical clarity and light gathering ability. No rangefinder required. In this rare circumstance, money is no consideration. Keep in mind that these are for professional use, say over 250 days a year in the field and widely varied conditions. I hope this finds everyone well, cheers.
I mysef have looked through quite a few and found the Swarovski EL to be the best..A little pricey but could see things others did not pick out..
 

sestoppelman

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Nope, BI means two.... bi nocular. Properly called a binocular, not a pair. Just a little levity to the serious conversation... LOL
 

Newby

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@redriverjake

If your ranges are 300 or less, 10x42s offer no benefit over 8x42s , but they do have significantly disadvantages compared to the 8s. Namely, they have significantly reduced FOV, and significantly worse low light performance, depending on what you regard as low light. Up until sunset or a little after, 10s are fine, but if you have need of them in serious low light, IE well after sunset, 10s don't cut it besides 8s of equivalent quality.
If it hasn't been mentioned, Swaro SLC 42s have been discontinued, but stock may still be around.

No one make has the best offering in all model slots. I have owned and used diffrent models of Zeiss, Swaro and Leica.
In your situation, I would look hard at the 8.5x42 Swaro ELs. Prices have dropped to accommodate the new NL as top of the range, bringing the $$ pain closer to discontinued 42 SLCs.

I really don't get all this palaver saying that dual bridges are less durable than single. The hinge points on dual bridges are much, much further apart than on a single bridge, making them stronger, not weaker.
 

Graham Hunter

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Nope, BI means two.... bi nocular. Properly called a binocular, not a pair. Just a little levity to the serious conversation... LOL
I think Bi means more than just two??? LOL
 

Anthonyt42

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I consider money a factor in my decision but I have had great luck with my nikkon prostaff series binos. I keep in in my badlands case but i use them about 120 days a yr for several days.
 

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My first binocular was a Leica 10x42BN, great binocular. Then I got the Swarovski EL10x42 for its range finding, another great binocular. Then I purchased what has become, maybe, my favorite and most used binocular, the little Zeiss 10x25 Terra ED. I just keep it in the truck. It is rugged, crystal clear, light weight and dirt cheap. It is especially appreciated when hiking in the mountains. I cannot imagine not having one of these little binoculars.
 

Rimshot

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I've gradually moved up the quality scale regarding binos, from cheaper Nikons and Leupolds to mid-range Vortex, and finally Zeiss Victory 10x45RF.

The cheaper ones served well enough, most of the time, but under certain conditions their shortcomings became apparent. So many things go into quality binos that are mostly hidden from the end user until they matter. Considering the cost of quality for everything else, and the time and expense spent on hunting, and the longevity and utility of quality equipment, I finally landed on the Zeiss rangefinding binos and wish I had done it long ago. I'm sure the Swaro EL-Range are just as good also. Of course there are plenty of times I don't need a rangefinder, but the times when you do it sure is handy to have it built in, rather than fumble with a separate rangefinder, and to me the weight penalty seems trivial.
 

jpndave

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Thanks for starting this great thread. I am also looking for my "Lifetime binoculars". Does anyone have direct feedback on the new NL Pure? I am leaning that way or possible to the Zeiss Victory SF both 10x42.
 

Rimshot

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Thanks for starting this great thread. I am also looking for my "Lifetime binoculars". Does anyone have direct feedback on the new NL Pure? I am leaning that way or possible to the Zeiss Victory SF both 10x42.
Not sure what kind of hunting you do, but after owning a bino with a built-in rangefinder I would never consider buying my 'primary/lifetime' bino without this feature. Not only have I found it to be invaluable in the field for many situations, but it has so many other uses. I had a separate Leica rangefinder before, but there is no comparison in convenience, speed, and utility.
 

JimP

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My only question for those who use binoculars that have a range finder included in them, what do you use for either when the range finder fails and you have sent them back to the factory for repairs and you have a hunt in the next couple of weeks?
 

jpndave

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Having a rangefinder separate seems a better choice if only for the future upgrade as that technology is moving faster than on the optics themselves. I have the Sig Kilo 2200BDX and it is very good. I can see the advantage in use but seems like planned obsolescence and contrary to a "lifetime" purchase.
 

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